updated 5/10/2010 10:28:08 AM ET 2010-05-10T14:28:08

A Belgian court has convicted a 50-year-old Belgian woman of setting up, directing and financing a terrorist group and sentenced her eight years in prison.

Malika El Aroud and seven others were found guilty Monday and sentenced to prison terms ranging from 40 months to eight years. One defendant was acquitted for lack of evidence.

The nine were arrested in December 2008 after police intercepted an e-mail from one suspect that they said suggested a suicide attack was imminent. Prosecutors have not said where the attack was to occur.

The nine defendants had denied the charges in the trial, which opened March 8.

El Aroud's first husband died in a suicide attack on a top anti-Taliban leader in Afghanistan just two days before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

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